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Jorgenson and Mehling DVD's, Which one is best?

Kelly DowKelly Dow South Florida✭✭✭
edited March 2006 in Technique Posts: 25
I am interested in getting one of these instructional dvds, you know a picture is worth a thousand words, and wanted some opinions from people that owned one or both. I own many of the books, but I think it would be helpful to see someone playing in an instructional manner to confirm the things I am doing right and/or shed light on any wrongs.



  • djangologydjangology Portland, OregonModerator Dell Arte Hommage
    Posts: 888
    There are a lot of instruction materials out there. Non are complete and all of them are complementary. I don't think that either of those 2 videos are necessarily better than the other. I would say the Romane Nashville video beats them both. There are some other European videos also but i dont remember what they are.
    "I want to party like its 1939!"
  • nwilkinsnwilkins New
    Posts: 431
    if you are looking for visual instruction on how to play then nothing can touch the Bireli DVD. Even though it isn't strictly an instructional video there is more to be learned from it than from any other visual source.

    Do not get the Mehling vids as he does not play with the technique you will want to emulate. I haven't seen the Jorgensen DVD.
  • dennisdennis Montreal, QuebecModerator
    Posts: 2,058
    nwilkins wrote:
    if you are looking for visual instruction on how to play then nothing can touch the Bireli DVD.

    except maybe the new bireli DVD!

    on a more serious note, i learned the most from all sorts of bootleg videos before there were any official ones available... a lot of these you can find for free on thanks to michael ...

    for commercial releases, bireli's dvd is obviously a must, the rosenberg dvd is great too, and i think romane has one that's actually instructional , i saw it on VHS, didnt' really like the learning portion but loved the performances. don't forget frank vignola's gypsy jazz jam with jimmy rosenberg (who is really the highlight of the dvd)...
  • Kelly DowKelly Dow South Florida✭✭✭
    Posts: 25
    You are right, those videos are great learning tools, I have the Bireli Gypsy Jazz Project, the Vignola Gypsy Jam, and the Stochelo one where he plays Spain. I have worked on a few of those before, I was just hoping there might be something out there with that caliber of player but going a little slower, with close-up shots at different angles especially the right hand.
    That new Sammy Daussat book looks interesting and it comes with a DVD. I am not that familiar with David Reinhardt's playing though, I only have heard him on the Nuages cut on the Bireli DVD.
    The Sammy Daussat book he did with Angelo Debarre is awesome.
  • Jez TanJez Tan SingaporeNew
    Posts: 39
    I am a late starter into this style of music, but I have since bought paul mehling, frank vignola, bireli, rosenberg and romane dvds. In my opinion, bireli's gypsy project and rosenberg's live in vienne 02 stands out best as far as visual learning and it really kept me awake notating all e fantastic n awe inspiring licks. Frank's gypsy jam is sort of home spun but features speedster Jimmy. I wonder y e camera didn't capture the smoke emitting from Jimmy's left hand!

    Paul and Romane's instructional videos are more of a intro to the style kind, nothing fanciful but downright useful if you are a beginner or do no hav foundation in some guitar theory. But among the two, paul is a bit boring as speaker but has more notated licks to offer than Romane. Romane has a book (w cd) titled L'Esprit Manouche, which offers lots more than what both dvds can, and it's a couple hundreds of pages thick. I'd recommend it! And there's a Stochelo Rosenberg book which on on sale at some UK website now, maybe u can check it out too. :>
    Tough time doesn't last, tough man does. Practice!
  • Michael BauerMichael Bauer Chicago, ILProdigy Selmers, Busatos and more…oh my!
    Posts: 1,002

    I have the Beginner Jorgenson DVD and like it. He works with a "student", who is a professional player, but is new to the style. The whole thing opens with a discussion/demonstration about the type of guitar used and why, then it builds on a simple blues progression, adding one new chord substitution each time until it. He demonstrates playing the sixth string with the thumb and explains how it can make playing rhythm easier in certain progression. The improv section works with arpeggios in different places on the neck and focuses on building short phrases as building blocks. I think the book and DVD work well together, plus there is an audio CD that goes with the book. He keeps it simple, so it works well for an absolute beginner (like me) to gypsy jazz. There are good close ups of both right and left hand technique as well.

    I found it helpful, both as a book to work with in conjunction with other books, and as a good context setter for someone new to gypsy jazz. If you get it, I don't think you'll regret it. I find myself replaying the DVD when there is not much good on the tube. I pick up some little thing every time.
    I've never been a guitar player, but I've played one on stage.
  • V-dubV-dub San Francisco, CA✭✭✭✭
    Posts: 266
    The Mehling video is pretty good, but if you're interested in specific technique of gypsy jazz players and patterns they use, its not so great.

    Paul is very much more of a "hear before you play" teacher, which is probably a better approach than learning a million licks, but is slower too. He also doesn't really use gypsy picking or gypsy-style fingering patterns.

    What he does teach is how to hear what you play before you play it and connect everything in a sensical manner.

    However, one shining endorsement for his videos is that they helped launch Sammo Miltich's pursuit of gypsy jazz music.
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